Growing up in Bethlehem in the 1980’s, Sami was involved with the Palestinian Center for the Study of Nonviolence in Jerusalem and coordinated workshops in conflict resolution, democracy, and nonviolence. He went to the United States to pursue an undergraduate degree at the University of Kansas. He earned a M.A. in International Relations at the American University, specializing in Peace and Conflict Resolution. During his time in the US, Sami kept very close links with his native homeland and always intended to return to Bethlehem to play his part in building and developing the Palestinian community. Sami has played a key role in a number of projects since his return to Bethlehem. He worked with the Palestinian Bible Society to establish a Biblical museum in Bethlehem, and he was one of the founders and partners of Radio Bethlehem 2000, one of the first radio stations to be launched in the West Bank. Sami also founded Holy Land Trust, a not-for-profit organization seeking to empower the community through mobilizing its strengths and resources to create real opportunities for the future. He continues to serve as its Executive Director, and has spoken to countless Encounter groups visiting Bethlehem.
A regular speaker on Encounter’s tours of Palestinian communities in the West Bank, Sami offers an important perspective and serves as inspiration as a leader in the non-violence movement. Come to listen and ask questions to learn about what is happening on the ground, and seed ideas and hope for what can be done to move forward constructively.
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Encounter neither contests nor endorses the views presented by speakers in this series.